United States District Court, D. Columbia.
STEPHANIE SETTLES, Plaintiff: Larry Paul Ellsworth, LEAD
ATTORNEY, JENNER & BLOCK LLP, Washington, DC.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, as Acting Commissioner of Social Security
Administration, Defendant: Thomas McLean Nanni, LEAD
ATTORNEY, SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION, Office of the
General Counsel, Baltimore, MD.
A. ROBINSON, United States Magistrate Judge.
case was referred to the undersigned for all purposes.
See Notice, Consent, and Reference of a Civil Action
to a Magistrate Judge (Document No. 22). Currently pending
and ready for resolution are (1) Plaintiff's Motion for
Judgment of Reversal (" Plaintiff's Motion" )
(Document No. 14) and (2) Motion for Judgment of Affirmance
and in Opposition to Motion for Judgment of Reversal ("
Defendant's Motion" ) (Document No. 15). Upon
consideration of the motions, the memoranda in support
thereof and in opposition thereto, and the entire record
herein, Plaintiff's motion will be granted in part and
Defendant's motion will be denied.
Stephanie Settles brings this action seeking judicial review
of a final decision by Defendant Commissioner of the Social
Security Administration, pursuant to Section 405(g) of the
Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § § 401 et
seq. (" SSA" ). Id. ¶ ¶
December 19, 1988, Plaintiff first applied for supplemental
security income (" SSI" ). Administrative Record
(" AR" ) at 493. On February 2, 1989, her
application was granted. Id. On March 30, 2001, she
was incarcerated for a one-year period, resulting in the
automatic loss of her benefits. Id.
December 31, 2002, Plaintiff again applied for SSI.
Id. On May 11, 2003, her claim was denied.
Id. She sought reconsideration of that decision but
that request was denied on November 10, 2003. Id.
and 2008, Plaintiff again applied for SSI, and those claims
were similarly denied. Id. On May 21, 2010, she
applied yet again for SSI, and on January 7, 2011, her claim
was denied yet again. Id. On March 15, 2011, she
filed for reconsideration. Id. at 86. On June 8,
2011, her claim for reconsideration was denied. Id.
August 2, 2011, Plaintiff filed a written request for a
hearing. Id. at 22. That hearing was held on August
22, 2012. Id. On September 4, 2012, Administrative
Law Judge (" ALJ" ) issued his determination,
finding that Plaintiff was not disabled. Id. at 31.
On September 24, 2013, the Commissioner denied the
plaintiff's request for a review of the ALJ's
September 4, 2012 decision. Id. at 1-4.
of the ALJ's Ruling
September 4, 2012, the ALJ issued a written opinion, wherein
he ultimately concluded that Plaintiff (referred to by the
ALJ as the claimant) was " not disabled under section
1614(a)(3)(A) of the Social Security Act." AR at 23-32.
Specifically, the ALJ made the following ten summary
1. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful
activity since May 21, 2010, the application date (20 C.F.R.
§ 416.971 et seq. ).
2. The claimant has the following severe impairments: mild
right-sided weakness as a result of alleged remote traumatic
brain injury, depression, rule out posttraumatic stress
disorder, and cocaine dependence in reported remission (20
C.F.R. § 416.920(c)).
3. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of
that meets or medically equals the severity of one of the
listed impairments in 20 C.F.R. § 404, Subpart P,
Appendix 1 (20 C.F.R. § 416.920(d), 416.925 and
4. After careful consideration of the entire record, the
undersigned finds that the claimant has the residual
functional capacity to perform light work as defined in 20
C.F.R. § 416.967(b) except that work must be unskilled,
allow her to alternate between sitting ...